KIDS COUNT Snapshot: Report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation finds dramatic drop in youth incarceration rate

According to an article by SparkAction, a new KIDS COUNT data snapshot released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation reports that the U.S. youth confinement rate is at a 35-year-low. This decline signals opportunity for alternative, more effective responses to court-involved youth. 

As stated in the report, Reducing Youth Incarceration in the United States, America's rate of locking up young people has dropped by more than 40 percent over a 15-year period, with no decrease in public safety.

The number of young people in correctional facilities in a single day fell to 70,792 in 2010, from a high of 107,637 in 1995. This downward trend, documented in data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement, has accelerated in recent years. 

Despite this sharp decline, the United States still leads the industrialized world in locking up its young people...

Click here to read SparkAction's full coverage of the Report.

For Baltimore Youth, Opportunity Goes Green - a story from our friends at SparkAction


Baltimore Center for Green Careers

By Alison Waldman, SparkAction
Click the link at the bottom to read the full story

At one point in his life, Jerrell Henry wasn’t sure what the future would hold.

Growing up in Baltimore, he didn’t have a college degree and saw no opportunity to get a steady, paying job. He was on the pathway to a series of jobs that barely paid the bills, and wouldn’t give him a career.

Then he heard about Baltimore Center for Green Careers (BCGC), which offers local, hands-on training in green jobs.

So he tried it. Jerrell is now fully employed with a local company only weeks after the program’s end. That’s no small feat in Baltimore, where unemployment is considerably higher than the national average, especially among young African American males.

“I loved the program,” he says. “They kept us on our toes. They helped us learn about speaking to employees, and gave us job readiness.”

BCGC is one of several Corps programs honored at The Corps Network’s 2013 Conference in Washington, DC, in February.

Corps are comprehensive youth development programs in cities and states that provide young people with job training, academic programming and leadership training through experience in service. A direct descendant of the Depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps, today’s Corps have been growing in recognition and enrollment as the economy leaves more young people out of work and unsure of the next step to a steady career.

This year’s conference covered the ways that Corps can improve programs to better serve opportunity youth—young people ages 16 to 24 who are not in school or connected to the workforce. It also looked at how federal funding streams like the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) can be used to bring effective Corps programs to scale, and celebrated the best programs and members through its 2013 Corpsmembers awards and Corps Projects of the Year.

Here's a closer look at a growing green-jobs success story in Baltimore.